It’s going to be very hard to stop the ball rolling once things like this start happening…Molly is a renegade, and her voice is being enabled by the web. My advice for her and the other 200,000 is to simply switch banks – but that’s beside the point. Revolution is in the air. – JB
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 13, 2011
BANK OF AMERICA RESPONDS TO 200,000 ANGRY CUSTOMERS,
SAYS CANCELING DEBIT CARD FEE WOULD BE ‘PREMATURE’
Bank of America’s corporate social responsibility executive calls creator of 200,000-strong campaign on Change.org demanding the bank cancel its new $5 debit card fee.
WASHINGTON, DC – A Bank of America executive has responded to an explosive campaign on Change.org demanding the bank cancel its new $5 fee for customers who use a debit card, saying that canceling the fee would be “premature.”
Andrew Plepler, Bank of America’s global corporate social responsibility executive and consumer policy executive, called Molly Katchpole, the 22-year-old Bank of America customer who launched the online petition campaign, earlier this week.
“We understand you and 200,000 people who have signed your petition are very frustrated,” Plepler told Molly over the phone. When asked directly whether Bank of America would reverse the fee, he said it would be “premature” to answer, but that “we constantly listen to our customer feedback.”
Katchpole launched the online petition campaign in early October after Bank of America announced a new $5 monthly charge to customers who use their debit cards.
“I can barely afford to make ends meet,” said Katchpole. “Now I’m expected to hand over money to Bank of America each month just for using my own debit card?”
“The American people bailed out Bank of America during a financial crisis the banks helped create,” reads Katchpole’s online petition. “You paid zero dollars in federal income tax last year. And now your bank is profiting, raking in $2 billion in profits last quarter alone. How can you justify squeezing another $60 a year from your debit card customers? This is despicable.”
Since the launch of the campaign on Change.org earlier this month, more than 200,000 Americans from all 50 states have joined, and the campaign has been featured on ABC and CNN. Katchpole will be meeting with Representative Brad Miller of North Carolina today to discuss new legislation in Congress that would make it easier for people to switch banks.
“It has been incredible to watch the rapid growth of Molly’s campaign,” said Change.org Founder and CEO Ben Rattray. “While working two part-time jobs, she has sparked a fire that’s spread to all 50 states in a matter of days. Change.org is about empowering anyone, anywhere to demand action on the issues that matter to them, and clearly this campaign has struck a chord.”
Live signature totals from Molly Katchpole’s Bank of America campaign: